Q:How do I stop my partner using the press to destroy my reputation?


If you fear that your former partner is about to go to the press with the intention of harming your reputation there are several different options available to you within civil law upon which you should seek to rely without delay. Often timing is everything and an urgent hearing will need to be listed.

Under the Convention of Human Rights, the protection of your reputation is a legitimate ground for restricting your spouse’s right to freedom of expression. In addition to this there are libel and slander laws in England and Wales to protect your reputation against defamation on an emergency basis. An individual is defamed when a person publishes to a third party words or matter containing an untrue imputation against his or her reputation.

Therefore if you believe that your spouse is about to publish something about you in a permanent form (i.e. in a book, magazine or newspaper) that is untrue and may have the effect of damaging your reputation, you should seek urgent legal advice with a view to securing a prohibitive injunction to prevent them from doing so. This application may need to be made without notice to your spouse.


Vardags is a top family law firm that specialises in complex cases often involving an international element. If you cannot find answers to your questions here, please consult our ‘family law guide‘ for further information, call us on 0207 717 9979  or email